LAS VEGAS — Leonard Ellerbe was cool, calm, collected — and well-dressed — during the MayMac World Tour last month. He almost always wore a smile on his face.
On Thursday, the Mayweather Promotions CEO’s smile was replaced with a scowl. Ellerbe went on a lengthy and passionate rant at Mayweather’s workout here at Mayweather Boxing Club, slamming media and some fans for criticizing the fight between Mayweather and Conor McGregor and how well it’s doing financially.
After a press question about T-Mobile Arena not being sold out for the fight Aug. 26, Ellerbe went off.
“The fact of the matter is we have over $60 million in the box office right now, which is more than double any other live gate that’s ever been done,” Ellerbe said, sweat pouring down his face due to the gym’s ridiculously high temperature. “The fight that they have on the 16th of September [Canelo Alvarez vs. Gennady Golovkin at T-Mobile Arena], next month, our fight right now we’ve got more in the box office right now — double — than they will have.”
Ellerbe became more agitated over a call he said he got from a reporter about Costco selling tickets for the fight. Costco is a warehouse wholesale retailer that sells items of every kind, from electronics to toiletries, and it’s known for selling in bulk at budget prices.
“I’m like, ‘We don’t have nothing to do with that,’” Ellerbe said. “But when you think about it, is that a bad thing? Opening this thing up to a housewife in Desmond, Idaho — Iowa, Kansas. Somebody who wouldn’t normally have access to our fight. Is that a bad thing, for it to be accessible in Costco?”
Ellerbe said Ticketmaster, the official ticket seller, set up the deal with Costco and he railed at those who would put that down rather than appreciate the ingenuity of it.
“That’s what’s wrong with boxing today,” Ellerbe said. “You guys are always complaining and looking for shit to complain about when there’s nothing there. That’s the reason why we can’t be innovative. That’s what Floyd Mayweather has done differently than anybody else. He’s thought outside the box.”
Ellerbe said Mayweather vs. McGregor is on pace to “blow past” the boxing gate record of $72 million from Mayweather vs. Pacquiao. In some categories, Ellerbe said, MayMac has already topped MayPac, especially internationally.
“The general interest from just the casual fans, who are very excited about this event coming together, thats what makes this massive. “Just not only in the U.S., just the international exposure alone, this thing has taken off.”
When asked about the hardcore fans of both MMA and boxing who have dismissed Mayweather vs. McGregor as a circus and not something worth watching, Ellerbe bristled even further.
“We appreciate all the fans,” he said. “We don’t ever want to turn our back or say anything. But again, the hardcore fans, that’s the reason why our sport isn’t where football and basketball is. It’s because we stay in our own little box. It’s like, you tell me what’s wrong with these two guys fighting. If you don’t want to watch it, don’t buy it. It’s as simple as that.”
Ellerbe saved his most ire for pundits who have written articles or said on television all their reasons why people shouldn’t buy the fight.
“Mind your fucking business,” he said. “You know? It’s like do your job, cover the sport. Obviously, you have to give your opinion, which we understand that. It’s like, we don’t see you saying nothing else about anybody else’s events. We know what this is about. It’s like, OK, one thing is for sure — you’re not gonna stop this event. The fans demanded this event and that’s what they’re gonna get. We didn’t ask for this.”
Ellerbe said at least Mayweather and their team are telling the truth about their fight not being sold out yet. He said Canelo vs. Glolovkin is not sold out, but those promoters are lying about it. Ellerbe referred to Canelo promoter Oscar De La Hoya, one of the more vocal MayMac critics, as an “idiot.”
“Social media was on fire because these two guys were going at it,” Ellerbe said of Mayweather vs. McGregor. “Did we happen to miss the world tour? Did we see the record number of amount of fans to come out and support a world tour. You kidding me?”
Source:: mma fighting